Operating income for the third quarter of 2019 was $209.8 million compared to $186.2 million for the comparable quarter of 2018. Operating income increased 13.7% excluding currency translation.
For the nine-month period ended Sept. 30, 2019, sales, operating income and net earnings improved 5.6%, 4.6% and 5.7% to $4 billion, $613.3 million and $372.6 million, respectively, compared to the same nine-month period in 2018. The 2019 nine-month period included results from 11 acquisitions completed since January 1, 2018, delivering acquisition-related sales growth for the period of 3.5%. Organic sales growth was 2.2% and the impact from foreign currency translation was negligible.
“We are pleased with third quarter results considering challenging and volatile macro-economic conditions globally,” said Geoffrey T. Martin, president and CEO. “The CCL Segment posted 2.1% organic growth with solid profitability gains. CCL Secure performance improved significantly while good progress at CCL Design contributed with electronics growth more than offsetting slower automotive markets. Home & Personal Care faced soft North American demand for aerosols and turbulent label markets in parts of Latin America where results declined. Food & Beverage growth moderated significantly from rates of recent years although sales remained very strong in Sleeves; profitability overall declined. Healthcare & Specialty profitability improved modestly on international results offsetting lower North American performance, especially in Canada. Avery’s strong back-to-school season, notably direct to consumer label sales, drove a 3.5% organic growth rate and significant profit improvement. Checkpoint sales increased 8.4% organically on new business wins driving strong profit performance in all MAS product lines. Innovia film volume declined on pruning mix in the United States and soft markets in Europe.”
“The company finished the quarter with a strong balance sheet,” Martin concluded. “Good free cash flow for the quarter reduced the company’s net leverage ratio to 1.84 times EBITDA compared to 1.99 times EBITDA at the end of the second quarter of 2019.”